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Expanding Opportunity

Why We Need TPA Now -- Opportunities Lost Every Day

  • In the absence of TPA, with each passing day, the global market is less and less of a level playing field. When excluded from preferential trade agreements, American workers and firms face disadvantages:
    • higher tariffs,
    • rules of origin that divert business to other countries, and
    • standards and regulations developed without U.S. input.
  • Higher Tariffs: With more and more preferential trade agreements that do not include the United States, U.S. exporters often face higher tariffs than other countries' producers in the same markets.
    • U.S. companies exporting to Chile face 7% tariffs -- higher than the tariffs faced by their competitors from Mexico, Canada, Argentina, and Brazil, who benefit from preferential trade pacts with Chile.
  • Business Diversion: U.S. companies often are forced to transfer operations and jobs to other countries because of the terms of other countries' FTAs, in particular their rules of origin.
    • The National Association of Manufacturers calculates that U.S. businesses have lost over $800 million in trade -- about 10,000 American jobs -- as a result of the many preferential trade agreements other countries have negotiated with Chile.
  • Exclusion from Standards-setting and Rule-making: Once our trading partners sign preferential trade deals, they often go on to adopt joint product standards and regulations that our exports cannot meet. U.S. firms -- in industries ranging from high tech to agriculture to biotechnology -- can be shut out, or forced to make expensive changes to their products or services to gain market access.

The American Electronics Association notes that under the EU's FTA with Mercosur, standards for high-tech products are being established that could undermine U.S. competitiveness in the region.